Here's a story of a little girl named Shruti who was very fond
On New Year's day, Shruti sat by the window thinking about her New
Year's resolutions. She wasn't feeling so good today as she had
just fought with her best friend Preeti. Lost in her thoughts, she
suddenly got up and walked down to her favorite sweet shop, owned
by Uncle Shambu. Uncle Shambu didn't fail to notice the sullen and
angry look on her face and enquired, "What's the matter Shruti? Did
you fight with Bunty again?"
Shruti who was a regular customer at his
shop, considered Uncle Shambu not only as her friend but also her
confidante. So, she started telling him about what was bugging her
that morning. "Uncle, it isn't Bunty this time. But, you know
Preeti, she is a big show-off who just pretends to be my best
friend. I fought with her this morning. And, now we are not
talking." Shruti's face was still fuming with anger. Just then
Riya, Uncle Shambu's daughter entered the shop and waved to
Shruti. She asked her father for the chocolates. She left after
Uncle Shambu gave her some sweets. With a gentle smile on his face,
Uncle Shambu said, "Oh, so today it is Preeti's turn, is it? Let me
ask you a question. I own this sweets shop here, so do you think
that I have to go elsewhere to buy sweets?" Shaking her head,
Shruti said, "Obviously not Uncle! In the same way, I get new
clothes easily without going anywhere else since my dad owns a
readymade garments shop. What's the big deal in this?"
This was exactly what Uncle Shambu wanted
to hear. Grabbing the right opportunity, he started, "Hmmm… So, it
means that we never fall short of things that we sell in our
Shruti exclaimed, "That is so
obvious, uncle!" Continuing further, he said,
"Ok! So, I will give you some homework
today. You also have to open your own store of happiness. In this
way, you will never fall short of happiness. Ever. How does that
sound to you?" Shruti, who had been listening intently to him,
asked, "Open a store of happiness?? Wow! That sounds fun! But,
Uncle, how do I do that?" Grinning widely, Uncle Shambu explained,
"It's simple! All that you have to do is this: from the time you
wake up, you should only give happiness to others. Do not give
unhappiness to anyone."
Looking a little confused, Shruti
interrupted uncle Shambu and asked him, "But, Uncle, I do not
understand, how do I give happiness to others? Am I not too young
for it?" Feeling amused at this innocent question, uncle continued,
"You are young. So what? If you help Bunty in his studies, let him
play your games, help your mother with housework, give food and
clothes to those in need, then how would you feel? Won't you feel
happy about helping others?" Shruti's face immediately lit up with
joy. "Of course Uncle!" she exclaimed, thinking that this would be
an interesting New Year's resolution.
Before she could say anything further, a
laborer walked in, wet with perspiration, "Can you please read out
this address for me" he asked Shruti. Looking at uncle Shambu,
Shruti said, "Oh yes! I know this place. In fact, I also have to go
that way. Come along with me. I will take you there." As they were
walking, she realized something and paused. "Hey, wait a minute,
you look really tired and are sweating a lot. Why don't you first
drink some water?" and she passed her water bottle to him.
The labor drank the water and
looked extremely satisfied and happy. He thanked Shruti and blessed
her. On seeing the satisfaction on the laborer's face, Shruti also
felt very happy.
Upon reaching home, she grabbed the
newspaper lying on the table. Her maid, Manjuben, was sweeping the
floor. She looked up at Shruti and asked her if there was any
interesting news in the paper. Glancing through the paper, Shruti
told her that there wasn't anything new in there. Manjuben looked
down and continued with her cleaning work. She regretted being
illiterate and expressed this to Shruti. "Manjuben, don't
feel bad! I can teach you how to read and write," said Shruti,
having remembered her resolution to open a store of happiness.
Manjuben literally jumped up with joy. And, from the next day
onwards, Shruti started teaching Manjuben daily for one
Seeing Manjubens' s perseverance and
enthusiasam, Shruti also experienced lot of joy. And, she realized
that, with each passing day her joy only increased.
After a few days, when Shruti came to
Uncle Shambhu's shop to buy 'sweets', Manjuben accompanied
her. Her face shone brightly with joy. Her brother who lived
in a village had written her a letter and for the first time, she
was able to read it for herself. And, this was possible only
because Shruti had taught her to read. She read out the letter
aloud and by the end of it, her eyes were filled with tears of joy.
She thanked Shruti enormously for removing the biggest dependency
of her life. Tears tricked down from Shruti's eyes as she looked up
at uncle Shambu and said, "All the credit for it goes to uncle
Shambu who introduced me to the idea of opening my own store of
happiness. I never knew what it felt like to share our happiness
with others. I am so thankful to you uncle. I promise you that I
will keep sharing happiness with others in whichever way I can."
Uncle Shambhu gave her a handful of sweets as a gift. He blessed
her to be happy and wished her that, may her "store of happiness"
run successfully always.